Negative impact | LJWorld.com
I am writing as a concerned Kansas native in regard to the recent decision by the Kansas Board of Education to allow the teaching of alternatives to the theory of evolution.
I am a proud graduate of Kansas University with a degree in genetics, the University of Minnesota with a Ph.D. in microbiology and am currently performing microbiology research at Princeton University.
To imply that there are any substantial debates regarding evolution among scientists is utterly ridiculous. The evidence for evolution is unequivocal ranging from the fossil record to our knowledge of how genes evolve and the common genetic relatedness of single-celled bacteria all the way to humans.
This decision will have a drastic negative effect on how the rest of the country views science education in Kansas, all the way from grade school through universities like Kansas University and Kansas State University. To the rest of the nation, Kansas is now known, fairly or not, as a state that questions the basic tenants of science in favor of other religious explanations.
This decision unfairly burdens Kansas kids entering the sciences to overcome this negative stereotype. In the 21st century, any state must attract its share of bright scientists and engineers to fuel technological development, and I fear this decision will make it difficult for businesses and universities in Kansas to do just that.
Whereas I once considered moving back to Kansas, I now have serious reservations about raising my two daughters in an educational system that questions evolution.
This is the sort of person Kansas would want to attract for the biosciences initiative. He's a Kansas native, so he knows the score, and the nonsense over creationism will keep people like him away.